MyNaTour is a travel community committed to sharing “real and responsible tourism,” living green, and respecting local ways of life. Their web presence is a fine Drupal site, and they asked us for a little help in making it even better.
We upgraded MaNatour’s core Drupal installation plus about three dozen modules, correcting several major security issues along the way. We also added Facebook integration, migrated the site’s hosting to Bluehost, removed an obsolete subdomain, and more.
Rebuilt the site’s dropdown menus to work like the main site’s.
Upgraded from Drupal 5 to Drupal 6.
Imported all content (including most recent webform submissions and what have you).
Adjusted inline page tools capabilities, including the arrangement of them all into a single tidy block.
Reworked a custom Trumba calendar module to be Drupal 6 compatible.
General blocks, menus, templates, and modules Drupalery.
And so on and so forth.
Here you can see the site’s old header, which didn’t match the rest of the university website’s layout, menu functionality, and visuals. Its many orange elements veered from the classic Husky purple and gold — and web-friendly gray — color scheme, leaving the Career Center’s decor looking a little wrong. (The new header can be seen in the image above.) Note that we didn’t design the new header and footer; we implemented it into CSS:
This is the site’s former footer:
And this is how the footer, redesigned by Career Center staff, looks after ENGINE’s assistance:
Bottom line: we’re very proud to now be associated — even if it’s in a very, very small way — with one of the nation’s oldest, most productive, and largest universities. If we may be so bold, we’re already looking forward to getting our next chance to lend our skills to another incredible academic institution.
We’re pleased to announce our successful redevelopment of the web home of Commonwealth Church Finance, a 30-year-old organization that has helped “over 600 churches and non-profit organizations obtain over half a billion dollars to finance construction.” Converting the site from Joomla! to WordPress proved to be a great move for CCF.
The site had used Joomla! 1.0 for some time, and needed an upgrade. But upgrading to Joomla! 1.5 is more of a migration than an upgrade — it’s simply not a developer-friendly process. As long as we had to migrate anyway, why not switch from Joomla! to WordPress, which is easier to use and has an open-source community that dwarfs Joomla!’s? Plus, upgrading the current site to future versions of WordPress will be a snap, especially compared to that daunting Jooma! 1.0-1.5 conversion. We’re still shuddering.
Luckily, CCF agreed to our conclusion. We retained the site’s look and feel, but custom-designed a more appealing header. Converting several static elements into dynamic elements (images into galleries, static pages into blog posts) makes the site easier to update and more flexible.
We also enabled a Lightbox-esque solution for the site’s hosted video, using JW Player:
Changing this Joomla! site into a WordPress site was certainly worth it, as CCF now has greater control over its site and access to a much, much richer support community.
D.C. Open Government Coalition, a nonprofit dedicated to increasing government transparency, hired us to redesign their Drupal site. They had been using a theme very similar to the stock Drupal theme and needed a visual identity that also helped tell the story of what they do.
Using the colors most commonly linked with the United States government seemed like the right idea — with the most space devoted to white to take advantage of the obvious associations between clean and open. We also used rocket-glare red to draw attention to the Report a Violation item, creating a call to action that stands out without stealing the show.
To streamline the experience for both visitor and editor, we also modified several content types and consolidated some navigation items. For example, combining several of the site’s dynamic content avenues (News, Announcements, etc.) into a single Blog cuts down on clicks — plus readers are much more likely to use RSS when looking at something that acts like a blog instead of a news section.
As a side note we’re very proud to be a part of this project, as we wholeheartedly support efforts to increase government openness.
Atlanta cosmetic surgery consultant Carol Martin had three problems:
Her site’s tricky-to-use Flash navigation was as hard for search engines to read as it was for humans… and it was even worse for those on mobile devices like iPhones and iPads, obviously.
She was unable to update her own site’s content without paying a webmaster to do it for her.
Her Flash-intensive e-commerce section was arranged so that each product was piled into the same page, which was all of course damn near invisible to Google and mobile devices. Since she’d switched from static pages to a Flash setup, her sales had fallen.
Rebuild the menu navigation using jQuery to achieve better aesthetics, better functionality (it now feels like you’re tactilely moving the slider instead of just aiming and praying), better usability, and better search engine visibility. Plus it works on iPads, BlackBerrys, and other mobiles now, making the entire site accessible to users on the go.
Customize WordPress for her, empowering her to update any of her own content from any computer at any time without any middle man whatsoever. We even rebuilt her old design as a custom WordPress theme.
Convert Flash-based store into static pages, making each individual page capable of pulling in traffic from search engines and improving usability.